Blended — ScotlandTastedSaw this featured in “Green Book” (albeit less than favorably) and thought I would give it a try. Nose: mildew, orange rind, vanilla. Palate: watery, citrus. Finish: medium length, a little spicy. Water greatly improves the nose by removing the stink of the mildew, but dulls the palate considerably. Overall: it tastes better than it smells, not entirely unpleasant, but fairly bland.19.99 USD per Bottle
Booker’s Bourbon Batch 2018-04 "Kitchen Table"
Bourbon — Kentucky, USATastedA traditional Valentine’s Day gift from the wife, always a pleasure to receive and consume! Nose: Hot! But behind that: toffee, oak, and caramel. Palate: cherries and spice...surprisingly smooth and mild (for the proof). Finish is long and sweet. Water softens the nose with a pleasant sweetness and adds a nice citrus touch to the palate. Overall: another hit for Booker’s! Perfect if you like your bourbon a little on the sweet side.69.99 USD per Bottle
Yellow Spot 12 Year Single Pot Still
Single Pot Still — IrelandTastedGreen Spot is one of my favorite Irish expressions, so I was excited to try this out and see how it holds up with additional time in the barrel. Nose: honey, vanilla, rose petals. Palate: orange peel, malt, honey. Finish is short and dry. Water: adds mildew to the nose, and sharpness to the palate and finish. Overall: a balanced, flavorful whiskey that neither harsh nor astringent.99.99 USD per Bottle
Woody Creek Colorado Straight Bourbon
Bourbon — Colorado, USATastedSecuring this bottle was a bit more difficult than I had planned. I am a big fan of Woody Creek’s ryes (in particular their single barrel offering), and when I heard they had a straight bourbon I knew I needed to try it. So, on my last trip to Colorado over Thanksgiving I planned a special trip to Basalt to experience the distillery. Things did not go as planned, as a car accident diverted us off the freeway and into a blizzard. We never made it to Basalt, but I did find a bottle at a small liquor store in Steamboat Springs. Was it worth it…? Nose: Cinnamon, honey, a hint of shoe leather. Palate: Orange peel, spicy, a bit oaky. Finish is mild but long. Water adds a lovely spice to the nose, and much needed balance to the palate. Improves the finish as well. Overall: a solid offering from a good distiller. Neat, the flavors don’t quite work, but just a drop of water made a big difference for me.
Blended — Northern IrelandTastedNose: leather, honey, vanilla Palate: malty, honey, a hint of lemon. Finish is practically non-existent. Water: Sweetens the nose and adds a citrus note. Makes the palate pop a bit with cinnamon. Overall: The “smooth and mellow” claim on the label is accurate. Not too bold, but an easy sipper.24.99 USD per Bottle
Old Grand-Dad 114 Bourbon
Bourbon — Kentucky, USATastedNose: caramel and damp firewood. Palate: hot and spicy, muddled. Spicy finish that fades away fast. Adding water adds honey notes to the nose and sweetens the palate, improving the flavor. Bold, but not particularly balanced. Probably best as a mixer.
Compass Box Spice Tree
Blended Malt — ScotlandTastedNose: malt, a hint of sawdust. Palate: woody, cinnamon, orange. Finish is medium length and warming. Adding water adds a citrus zest to the nose, and smooths the palate. Overall: very balanced and delicious, with lots of complementary flavors.
Eagle Rare 10 Year Bourbon
Bourbon — Kentucky, USATastedNose: mildew, wood, vanilla. Palate: honey, cinnamon, orange. Finish is medium length with a hint of spice. Adding water intensified the nose and added spice to the palate. Overall: tasted watery and muted to me, I wasn’t particularly impressed.
Woody Creek Single Barrel Rye
Rye — Colorado, USATastedBarrel: 1308. Nose: fresh cut wood, honey, allspice. Palate: orange, wood, fresh spices. Finish is long, hot, and a little spicy. Adding water sweetens and balances the nose and brings forth more citrus on the palate. Overall: what a great rye! A new favorite.
Jameson Caskmates Stout Edition
Blended — IrelandTastedNose: vanilla, mildew, honey. Palate: malt, chocolate, orange. Finish was short and warming. Water balanced the nose but brought forward some sour citrus off-notes. Overall: not too bad, a fun variation.